Keith’s grandfather Archibald McDonell appears in the 1861 Canadian Census living in Chichester, Pontiac County, Canada East (Quebec). He is living alone.
The 1861 Canadian census is on microfilm and was studied at a Family History Center back in about 2000. This film’s condition was not good for the names were blackened and hard to read; however, Ancestry.com now has this census in their collection and they have cleaned up the images so you can read them clearly.
Source: Archibald McDonald, 1861 Canadian Census for Pontiac Co., Canada East (Quebec) Page Starts with the name Angus (Augus) R. McDonald – page 135 (9), Image 133 (Chichester Township starts on Image 125 at Ancestry.com).
Line 28 Archie McDonnell, Carpenter, born U.C., Catholic, age 27, male, members of family 1, frame, number of stories 1.5, number of families, 1, second line – Log, one story 1, one family 1. Pg. 2 Quantity of Land attached 96, Carpenter, 12 months of labor, Value of business/manufacture 100.
The Canadian Government uses the following microfilm numbering system for this census as described by Ancestry.com. I have used finding aids for the Canadian Census at libraries like the Cloverdale Library in Surrey, B.C. which has a wonderful Canadian genealogical collection. Checking my notes indicate that film #C-1305 was used.
Ancestry.com’s description – Canada. “Census returns for 1861.” LAC microfilm C-999 to C-1007, C-1010 to C-1093, C-1095 to C-1108, C-1232 to C-1331, M-1165 to M-1166, M-1168 to M-1171, M-556, M-874 to M-878, M-880 to M-886, M-896 to M-900. Library and Archives Canada, Ottawa.
The Family History Library also has its own microfilm of these Canadian Census. The film number list below is the same as what I have written in my notes and page 135.
Family History Catalog: QUEBEC Pontiac – FHL US/CAN Census Area [ 517406 ]
In order to understand more about the area we are identifying in the Canadian Census of 1861 I turn to Wikipedia to assist me.
Wikipedia has an article where they give a description and maps of Allumette Island. This article points out the different spellings for the island in French. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/L’Isle-aux-Allumettes,_Quebec
Using Wikipedia we find more information on Chichester which is across from Allumette Island. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chichester,_Quebec
We expand that to include the Pontiac municipality: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pontiac_Regional_County_Municipality,_Quebec
Here is a Gazetteer for Pontiac County at Rootsweb: http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~onrenfre/gazetteer_Pont.html
The map below is from Microsoft Streets and Trips. This map gives us an idea of what the area looks like where Archibald McDonell lived. Click on the map to open it to a larger size for viewing.
This area will be of great importance in the family history and will include the town of Chichester and Chapeau which is on Allumette Island. The town of Pembroke is located south of Allumette Island in Renfrew County, Ontario. The St. Alphonsus Liguori Church is located in Chapeau.